Katie and I attended a workshop this week around ‘Smart Recruitment’ led by Stephanie Curnock, a Chartered Occupational Psychologist and Associate CIPD.
It was a workshop aimed at giving SME’s access to the same selection tools and expertise used by large organisations, enabling them to make the right recruitment decisions with limited resources. Working with agencies and in-house recruitment teams, we felt this topic would be relevant for us to share our insights on.
Over the years, similar to Steph, we’ve helped lots of large organisations build their ‘employee brand’ very successfully, which has given them a genuine competitive advantage in the job market. Helping them to source the skills for those difficult to fill jobs faster and more effectively than their competitors.
One of my reasons for setting up PLOTT Creative (formerly AP Designs), was a genuine belief that the best ‘branding’ (customer or employee) shouldn’t be reserved for big businesses with deep pockets. During the last 5 years we’ve helped many smaller clients establish their customer brand and turn what they thought were their weaknesses into strengths and develop them into UPS’s (unique selling points), giving them an advantage over the big boys in a lot of cases.
But the area where some of our clients have come unstuck in the last couple of years, is the ability to attract and retain the people they need to keep their business running. We have found this mostly in the recruitment, digital and engineering fields. Their product or service maybe fantastic and they have more customers than they can handle due to a well thought out Customer Value Proposition (CVP) articulating their uniqueness superbly, but the one thing holding them back is not having the talent to deliver!
Sound familiar? Can you see it becoming a problem in the future? More and more of our clients are having ‘people’ issues, so as well as helping them establish their CVP’s, we’re being asked more and more to develop their EVP’s and employer brand.
If the phrase ‘Employee Value Proposition’ is making your eyes are glaze over, to put it very simply, in non-jargon terms, let me rephrase:
An ‘Employee Value Proposition’ is…
- The reason why people like to work for you.
- The reason why they come and the reason why they stay.
- The thing that makes you different from other businesses.
- Your company’s Unique Selling Points – to potential talent.
So your EVP needs to be…
Unique, relevant, compelling and make you stand out from the sea of sameness – differentiation is crucial to give you an edge. Most importantly, the ‘packaging’ must reflect the ‘content’, by that, I mean your branding must reflect the reality!
I have worked with one household name in particular who built a very powerful EVP and Employer Brand but the image (brand) they were selling externally did not to match up to the day-to-day reality, leaving new and existing employees feeling a little ‘conned’ and de-motivated.
So why is an EVP important?
I hope you are starting to see that an EVP isn’t just a ‘nice to have’ for the big boys. Below are a few facts and figures from the Corporate Leadership Council’s research about the benefits a well thought out EVP can bring:
- Improve the commitment of new hires by up to 29%
- Reduce new hire compensation premiums by up to 50%
- Increase the likelihood of employees acting as advocates for your business from an average of 24% to 47%
An effective EVP allows businesses to source more deeply in the labour market and help them secure the best people in an increasingly difficult talent market.
In my next musings, I’ll be looking at ‘What makes a good EVP’ using a couple of recent case studies that will help you really understand where to start in this journey.